Deer Management

What is a Deer Management Group (DMG)?
DMGs are voluntary and are run by representatives of the landholdings in the group’s area. The collaborative activities of a group include the carrying out of a coordinated count of all the deer in the area annually. This provides a basis for assessing the cull required to meet the combined objectives of group members and to ensure that the deer are managed sustainably – that there is a population of deer suitable in terms of the environment and compatible with other land uses such as farming, forestry, tourism and public recreation, and which makes a contribution to the local economy. The annual cull is agreed among members of each DMG.

Group Deer Numbers
ITDMG aims to keep deer numbers consistent and has achieved this through a group wide agreement on cull numbers.

In February 2017, SNH carried out a helicopter count of the whole group area. They counted 754 stags, 2173 hinds and 956 calves, giving a total 3883 deer on an area of 53233 ha. From this we can calculate the average deer density to be 7.3 deer per 100 ha. Weather conditions were good and effort was made to fly over forested areas to count the deer, though some will have been missed as a result of cover.

Information on group cull figures and cull targets set using a population model for the open hill can be found in our deer management plan here.